Mental health is a human right that should not be ignored, the Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Mr Tony Ojukwu, SAN, has said.
Ojukwu made this known at a dialogue on mental health organised by the NHRC for the members of its staff.
”The right to health encompasses all components of health, including mental and therefore within the commission’s mandate to promote and protect,” he said.
Represented by Mr Benedict Agu, his special assistant, Ojukwu said unfortunately, attention was not given to mental health as physical health.
” In acknowledgment of the essence of mental health, the commission has convened this dialogue for staff in joining the world to mark the 2022 World Mental Day which has the theme ‘Make Mental Health and Wellbeing a Priority,” he said.
Ojukwu said the commission looked forward to improving measures to ensure that members of staff have relevant information and services on mental health.
He added that this would help them meet their mental health needs especially as they are often exposed to complaints that might traumatised them.
” It is also hoped that this dialogue will equip them with useful information and stills in handling complainants who are traumatised as a result of their experiences.
” Such as defilement example, sexual abuse of minors, rape, domestic violence, spoual or family abandonment, torture, and extra-judicial killing among others.
” NHRC under my watch has continued to take proactive steps in ensuring that both complainants and staff maintain emotional balance.
” Particularly, those in departments and units where complaints are received and treated,” he said.
Ojukwu added that the commission has recently created a counseling unit to handle cases related to mental health which may arise in course of work.
Mental health is a human right/NAN…